Updated: May 17, 2016 7:45:57 am
BJP MP from Jamnagar Poonam Maadam was injured after she fell into an open sewer line during a demolition drive in Jalaramnagar area of the city on Monday. After primary care at a local hospital, she was airlifted to Mumbai for further treatment.
“A team of doctors attended to her immediately, and administered stitches and further treatment. Her condition is stable and she is currently under observation,” said a spokesperson of Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital in Mumbai. The 40-year-old MP has suffered injuries to her head and shoulders.
The incident took place around 11 am when Maadam went to Jalaramnagar slum, demanding the Jamnagar Municipal Corporation (JMC) give affected families two more days on humanitarian grounds to vacate their homes.
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She was discussing the demolition drive with JMC officials while standing on a footbridge built by the slum-dwellers over the open drain when the structure collapsed. A few others also fell in the gutter.
Maadam was soon rescued by fire-brigade personnel and onlookers, and rushed to a private hospital.
“The walkway over the sewer line collapsed as onlookers and journalists assembled on it,” Jamnagar B Division police inspector Samir Sarda said.
According to doctors, the injuries were not serious, but Maadam suffered a deep cut on her head, besides bruises on shoulders. The MP’s personal assistant and her family could not be reached for comment.
Meanwhile, the High Court on Monday directed the JMC to maintain status quo till June 17, after which the demolition drive was stopped.
Videos of the incident showed JMC officers explaining the issue to the MP. But, as soon as she says that the affected families should be given two more days on humanitarian grounds, the walkway collapses.
Municipal commissioner of Jamnagar Harshad Patel said: “It was an accident. We were removing encroachment as per the (Gujarat) High Court order. Affected people have been given alternative housing.”
The JMC is trying to rehabilitate 237 families of the slum to a location near Jamnagar airport. However, the residents have moved the Gujarat High Court, which has asked them to approach a lower court.
“We had submitted the scheme of their relocation to the High Court, and it had directed the affected families to submit an undertaking to Jamnagar court by May 2. After May 2, there was no stay and we had already provided them with alternative housing,” the commissioner said.
The affected families on Monday moved the High Court again as the demolition began. “The HC ordered us to maintain status quo till June 17. Complying with the order, we have stopped the demolition,” Patel said.
[with inputs from ENS Mumbai]
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